February 3, 2009

Dream Theorists

There are people that study or have studied dreams and the unconscious mind for a living. Among the more famous dream theorists are Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler, and Carl Jung. These theorists studied sleep and dreams within the world of psychology. Although not all of the theories are still believed today, they have all helped to make great advances to modern beliefs about dreams.

One of the things Freud theorized about is that there are two types of dream content—one called manifest and the other called latent. He said that manifest content has no real meaning or significance at all. He thought of it like a mask for the unconscious. That is where the latent dreams come in. They are the dreams that occurred because of unconscious fantasies we have. For those of you that know a bit about psychological theory, Freud also theorized that dreams originated from either the id or the ego. Dreams from the id were meant to solve a conflict of some sort and dreams from the ego were for satisfying some kind of instinct.

Adler’s theories and beliefs are similar to what many still believe today. He believed that the unconscious dreams are symbolic of something that is happening to us in reality. He believed that we could learn from our dreams to better understand how to solve our real life problems. He also believed that we may experience dreams as an outlet to emotions or actions that are not socially acceptable behaviors. Since we can’t succumb to our true behavior wishes, such as to lash out in anger at an authority figure, we simply allow ourselves the satisfaction in the dream state. He said that the more dreams we have, the more problems we have.

Jung is quite unique in one of his theories. He believed that dreams represented the unconscious realm itself– not a personal unconscious or subconscious, but that there is a greater unconscious world in which ghosts reside. He believed that these ghosts were what haunted the mentally ill, causing their illnesses. Many believe that Jung was ill himself when he devised this theory because he based them off of dreams that he himself experienced, involving the dead.

There are many other psychologists that have studied dreams with regards to what they mean or why they occur. There are people today that are still studying these issues and creating new theories. The fact is, as long as we continue to dream and as long as it remains such a fascinating subject, there will continue to be new theories devised on the about the subject.

Have a dream you would like to discuss? Come share it with your dreaming friends at www.boomeryearbook.com.

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